Question about a quilt box
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 27
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    122

    Default Question about a quilt box

    I live in Maine. this year I have made candy boards to put on the top of my hives. I have also insulated the hives. I am planning to make quilt boxes by drilling holes in supers, putting muslin on the bottoms and filling them with wood chips. I will place these over the candy boards and put hemosote boards under the outer covers. So here is my question. Should I put insulation around the quilt board boxes? I would leave the vent holes open. I know this seems like a silly question but if it makes a difference I want to do it right. Thank you for any insight.

  2. Remove Advertisements
    BeeSource.com
    Advertisements
     

  3. #2

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    Quote Originally Posted by Original Cookie View Post
    I live in Maine. this year I have made candy boards to put on the top of my hives. I have also insulated the hives. I am planning to make quilt boxes by drilling holes in supers, putting muslin on the bottoms and filling them with wood chips. I will place these over the candy boards and put hemosote boards under the outer covers. So here is my question. Should I put insulation around the quilt board boxes? I would leave the vent holes open. I know this seems like a silly question but if it makes a difference I want to do it right. Thank you for any insight.
    I have never used Quilt Boxes and have moved away from Homasote Boards as well.
    Having said that, the holes need to be open so that they vent any moisture away from whatever material you are using to “draw” moisture away from the hives. IMO, Quilt Boxes are not necessary. If you have top insulation and proper ventilation, there is no need to capture excess moisture. If you have the right set-up, excess moisture is ventilated out of the hive. Top insulation would prevent moisture from condensing on the upper surface of the hive and freezing where it would rain down on the bees. Hopefully someone that has used Quilt Boxes chimes in and can help.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Eliot, ME
    Posts
    101

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    I don't think you want to insulate the quiltbox.

    Im wintering two hives, both in 2 deeps, with a honey super, a candy board and then a q-box on top, with an insulated cover. Ive only insulated 2 sides of the deeps, the north and northwest facing back and side - as this is the wind direction from across a large meadow, there is no wind block - that 0 degree arctic NW wind can be brutal.

    They are wrapped in 30# roofing felt, but only the deeps and just enough to cover the honey super gap. the quiltbox is not insulated or wrapped, I want it to be cold so the water vapor can condense on the top of the wood chips. I have 4 1 inch (or maybe 1 1/2 inch) holes drilled in the q-box, the chips are up to the bottom of the holes.

    Mike

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    international falls, Mn
    Posts
    699

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    Hello Cookie, I also live in an extreme winter area ( area 2or3 I forget) and we annually see temps to -40F and sometimes colder. I have used quilt boxs on all my outside hives for several years and can say that they do ventilate the hives and also provide insulation, but I'm having second thoughts about them. I've had dismal overwinter survival rates, due to nosema when the weather starts to warm a bit pre-spring.My theory is that it does what it advertises, but I think it also harbors some virus's in the wood chips which can kill or at least weaken the bees when it warms up....
    This year I'm just insulating the telescoping cover (inside) with styro and providing a ventilation hole near the hand hold. I'm also using stretchy plastic wrap arround the box seams, and of course a very small entrance opening at the bottom. This isn't very high tech, but sometimes I over think things and thought I would go back to square 1...
    Another possible solution might be to change out the wood chips on a regular basis (monthly) to rid the hive of the nasty old, wet, virus laden chips....This is only my opinion of what I think is happening in the top of the box..
    So take it for what its worth and keep an open mind ;>}
    I also indoor winter nucs and have had better success there. At least enough success to not have to buy bees in the spring for several years...

    ==McBee7==

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    122

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    Thank you for everyone’s input. I do think I am going to use the quilt box on some of the hives and experiment, not on others. I won’t insulate them though. I do think it’s a good idea to change out the wood chips mid winter. That’s a good idea

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Posts
    1,357

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    I overlap the bottom two inches of my quilt boxes, mainly to protect the joint from wind. The top of the quilt box is uninsulated. Protect the inside of your telescoping or migratory cover above the quilt or it will mold. Normally here I put the QB on this week, but the weather is quite warm and the long term forecast is for warm days, so I may not putting them on for a couple more weeks.
    Zone 6B

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Posts
    413

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    I don't believe that you'll need a Homosote board above a quilt box full of wood shavings. I don't have one above my quilt box - instead have a 1" rigid insulation foam board between the quilt box and outer cover.

    TP
    There must be a harder way to do that... let me find it for you.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Belmont, Michigan
    Posts
    189

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    There seems to be a concern about the use of wood shavings. I was wondering if one could put in wood pellets. I use them for my pellet stove in the winter and know that they do readily absorb moisture when they come in contact with it, and fall apart when they get wet. Otherwise they're a hard compressed wood pellet. They're relatively cheap at $4 for a 40# bag. So weight might be a factor, but then again one could experiment with one of the Mann Lake 10 frame black in-hive feeders. They hold 4 gal. of syrup which has to weight around 30#. Cut some slots in the bottom of each side and covered with no.8 hardware cloth to allow the warm moist air up and through the pellets before condensing back to water. Otherwise don't cut the bottom out and see if the damp moisture wouldn't funnel up through the center of the feeder. Or make the feeder dual purpose, by leaving one side to hold syrup and slotting the other side covered with the hardware cloth to accept the pellets in winter and to expel the moist air. Hey, just an old man rambling out loud is all!!

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Idaho Falls, ID
    Posts
    690

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    Quote Originally Posted by rick54 View Post
    There seems to be a concern about the use of wood shavings.
    What's the concern?
    -- Joe
    "Make your own decision and embrace the consequences." -- jwcarlson

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Central Iowa
    Posts
    33

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    I used them this winter and they worked great. Same set up with a super and muslin, but I put #8 hardware cloth in the bottom and the cloth above that so the bees can't chew through the muslin. I think of a quilt box as the attic on your house. Insulation on the bottom and ventilation above. I had 2 holes on all 4 sides (covered with #8 hardware cloth so nothing can get in). The number of holes is debateable, as I put some tape over a few. Needs to be drafty so it removes moisture absorbed by the chips. I kept my chips as deep as possible without blocking the holes too.

  12. #11
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Belmont, Michigan
    Posts
    189

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    Lemmje, see post #4 above.

  13. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Rensselaer County, NY, USA
    Posts
    5,536

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    I am not aware of any concern about wood shavings, other than if you don't have a fabric floor to your quilt box then you will be dumping particles down on the bees all winter. But that would be true no matter what was insulating your quilt box

    I burn wood pellets so I am very familiar with them and compared to pine shavings they would be undesirable. Aside from being much heavier, they wouldn't absorb moisture (nor release it) as readily as shavings because they acquired a slightly glazed surface during their extrusion. Some pellets also have chemical additives.

    Pine shavings are clean, lightweight, highly absorbent, inexpensive and readily available. I buy mine at Tractor Supply stores. And once I think they need replacement, after a couple of winters, or a year if I keep my boxes on for 12 months, then they make excellent mulch around my blueberries. Some people I know also use them for smoker fuel, which also works.

    Nancy

  14. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Idaho Falls, ID
    Posts
    690

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    Quote Originally Posted by rick54 View Post
    Lemmje, see post #4 above.
    Completely disagree. And since it is all anecdotal, neither of our opinions are worth listening to.

    I use a #8 hardware cloth, burlap sack, inches of wood shavings, then ventilation holes above, also covered with hardware cloth. Over the years about a 10% winter loss.

    Still anecdotal, but no problem with "pet bedding".
    -- Joe
    "Make your own decision and embrace the consequences." -- jwcarlson

  15. #14
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Belmont, Michigan
    Posts
    189

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    Yes, I hear the muslin works fine also. I believe the reason folks use the wood shavings is because they're dried by the compression used to form them into those small packaged bales you get at the farm stores. Because of this dryness they're more accepting of moisture.

    As for the wood pellets, the sawdust is compressed at hundreds of tons per square inch and then formed into the pellet. The high compression generates heat which creates a pellet that is drier than a popcorn fart! Look at a pellet sometime, they look as though they have a glass coating on them. This is a result of the high pressure. They act then as a giant desiccant pad of wood fiber.

    Where are you finding the dampness in the moisture quilt material, more towards the top of the material closest to the top cover, or at the bottom of the material next to the hardware cloth closest to the bees? My guess would be the top.

  16. #15
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Belmont, Michigan
    Posts
    189

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    lemmje, that's a misnomer that there is an additive in the manufacturing of wood pellets. They are completely formed by pressure and heat. The same equipment used to produce rabbit pellets and there is no additive to alfalfa to help create the pellet. There would also have to be a disclosure on the pellet bag as to the additive that is added for safety concerns regarding flame flare-up and any carcinogenic vapors that may be produced by the burning pellet.

  17. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Idaho Falls, ID
    Posts
    690

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    Quote Originally Posted by rick54 View Post
    lemmje, that's a misnomer that there is an additive in the manufacturing of wood pellets.
    You replied to the wrong person with that comment, i didn't say that, but thanks for the clarification. There is a wood pellet plant just a few miles south of me in Firth, Idaho that I visited once many years ago just out of curiosity. I am fascinated by all things.

    I don't know if shavings are better than pellets, but i do know that shavings are not a concern. I take the quilt box off when i take down the wind barrier/snow fence end of March.
    -- Joe
    "Make your own decision and embrace the consequences." -- jwcarlson

  18. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Idaho Falls, ID
    Posts
    690

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    BTW: The place in Firth said they were recycling all kinds of wood including pallets and other building material, which could have been treated, so Nancy's words about chemical additives could be just a part of the raw material used. Shavings could be the same.

    Make your own, right?
    -- Joe
    "Make your own decision and embrace the consequences." -- jwcarlson

  19. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO, USA
    Posts
    113

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    Im using muslin in mine, the bees have not chewed it at all. I favored muslin over hardware cloth as I was concerned about the warm air condensing on the metal hardware cloth. I use wood shaving hamster bedding for the filler.

  20. #19
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Belmont, Michigan
    Posts
    189

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    lemmje, sorry for misdirecting my comment to you. The whole idea of additives in pellets came out of the food industry. Namely the bbq industry. There are companies that produce pellet powered bbq pits/grills (Traeger). These pits/grills are a one time sale, but if you can create a source of income by selling pellets to go with your grill, now you've got steady income. So one only has to put out "fake news" that pellets have additives and ours don't. Remember, we're in that age of "fake news" these days! Yes, shavings work good because they're from kiln dried wood. The driest medium is going to absorb the most water. As long as the quilt box has good ventilation at the top it will pull off any moisture. Pallets are produced cheaply from rough sawn lumber. The only lumber I know that gets additives are your treated lumber and so stated as such. Then again, the topic of additives can be applied to burlap. Were not burlap bags in the past treated with rodenticide for mice etc.? Are not some fabrics treated with flame retardant today??? Just a thought. But I still need an answer to my question as to where the moisture resides in the quilt box, at the top of the absorption material, closest to the top cover, or at the bottom next to the hardware cloth?

  21. #20
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Idaho Falls, ID
    Posts
    690

    Default Re: Question about a quilt box

    Quote Originally Posted by rick54 View Post
    I still need an answer to my question as to where the moisture resides in the quilt box, at the top of the absorption material, closest to the top cover, or at the bottom next to the hardware cloth?
    Top of the wood shavings is where i find the moisture when i see it, assuming it is being wicked from the source to the outside world.
    -- Joe
    "Make your own decision and embrace the consequences." -- jwcarlson

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •